On 9/14/2012 4:09 AM, Bruno Marchal wrote:

On 13 Sep 2012, at 13:17, Roger Clough wrote:

Hi Bruno Marchal and meekerdb,

ROGER:  Hi meekerdb

First, science can only work with quantity, not quality, so
it only works with half a brain.

MEEKERDB [actually it is BRUNO]: Bad decision. You are the one cutting the "corpus callosum" here.

ROGER: You have to. Quantity is an objective measure, quality is a subjective measure.
Apples and oranges.

You are too much categorical. Qualities can have objective features too. Modal logic, and other non standard logic are invented for that purposes.
Geometry and topology can have non quantitative features, also.

Dear Bruno,

This concept of "objective property" is just consistency of definition, nothing more!

Secondly, meaning is not a scientific category.

Model theory studies a form of meaning. If you decide that something is not scientific, you make it non scientific.

If it is incapable of being falsified by physical evidence then it is "nonscientific".

So science
can neither make nor understand meaningful statements.
Logic has the same fatal problem.

Only if you decide so.

No, that would be "true belief" as Alberto discussed elsewhere. If one accepts as true some set of axioms then certain properties follow automatically. But if we look at theories in a "meta" way, we see that there are multiple possible axioms. For example, we have ZFC and ZF-C (with or without axiom of choice). These have very different models.

BRUNO ?: Not at all. Logic handle both syntactical or digital transformations, and its "dual" the corresponding semantical adjoint transformation. There is proof theory and model theory. Meaning is handle by non syntactical mathematical structures. There are many branches in
logic, and semantic, alias Model Theory, is one of them.

ROGER: Those are all tools for working with objective data such as numbers or written words.

Not at all. Model studies infinite structure, some of them have no syntactical or finite counterparts.

You are ignoring the existence of finitistic and ultrafinitistic axioms! Maybe we need to revisit model theory <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Model_theory>.

Then what do you do with subjective data ? Obviously you must throw it out.

On the contrary, even with just the UDA, consciousness is the basic notion at the base of the whole reasoning (which annoys of course those who want to keep it under the rug). You are either a bit unfair, or ignorant of the UDA. Its role consists in showing that the subjective data and the 3p stuff are not easily reconciled with comp, as we must explain the physical 3p, from coherence condition on the subjective experience related to computations.

We need some reason to believe that just because I have a subjective experience of "being in the world" that this implies that this is possible for other entities. Chalmer's argues for panprotopsychism, the theory that everything has subjective experience and qualia, but does not seem to offer a hypothesis as to how. I offer (reasoning with Vaughan Pratt) a theory that psychism follows from Stone duality, but this limits subjectivity to the duality between Boolean algebras (up to isomorphism) and topological spaces (up to isomorphism).

BRUNO To separate science from religion looks nice, but it consists in encouraging nonsense in religion, and in science eventually.

ROGER: Religion deals mainly with subjective issues such as values. morality, salvation, forgiveness.
These are inextended or nonphysical human/divine issues.

Yes, but that does not mean we cannot handle them with the scientific method. If not you would not even been arguing.

It is ironic that you are taking this side of the debate, Bruno! You, in your theory, have reduced to a epiphenomena the very thing that allows for falsification.

The Bible was not written as a scientific textbook, but as a manual oof faith and moral practice.


    Sam Harris makes a good argument for this.

Science deals entirely with objective issues such as facts, quantity, numbers, physical data.

If you decide so, but then religious people should stop doing factual claims, and stop proposing normatible behavior. Science can study its own limitations, and reveal what is beyond itself. Like in neoplatonism, science proposes a negative theology, protecting faith from blind faith, actually.

    I.e. "true belief". I agree.

BRUNO: Science cannot answer the religious question, nor even the human question,
nor even the machine question, but it *can* reduce the nonsense.

ROGER: You can try, which is what atheists do.

No atheists have a blind faith in a primary universe. They are religious, despite they want not to be. A scientist aware of the mind-body problem can only be agnostic, and continue the research for more information. Atheists are Christian, as John Clark illustrates so well.

    I agree.

As I say, there are a few errors in facts in the Bible.

Yes, like PI = 3.

There is good evidence that the ancient Egyptians used PI = 22/7, so the PI = 3 claim is inexcusable. Perhaps this was a typo that was continued in the hand copying of the Bible.

But physics and chemistry have no capabability of dealing with meaning, value, morality, salvation, etc.

OK. Like electronics cannot explain the Deep Blue chess strategy. But computer science explains Deep Blue strategy, and it explains already why there is something like meaning, value, morality, salvation. Computer science deals with immaterial entity, developing discourse on many non material things, including knowledge, meaning, etc.

    We have to consider multiple levels of explanation.

As I said, you are the one defending a reductionist conception of machine, confusing them with "nothing but" their appearances.


But you are not innocent of fault, Bruno. You stand accused of defending a immaterialist conception of machine that completely discounts (physical) appearance. You are taking universality too far. I contend that universality is the independence of computations to any particular machine but there must be at least one physical system that can implement a given computation for that computation to be knowable. This is just a accessibility question, in the Kripke sense of accessible worlds <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Accessibility_relation>.




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